Friday, March 20, 2015

7 Questions For: Author Erik Weibel

Erik is an thirteen-year-old eight grader who loves to read. He started his blog, This Kid Reviews Books when he was nine and published his first book, The Adventures of Tomato and Pea, when he was eleven. Erik writes a monthly book review column for a local free newspaper. He has a black belt in TaeKwon Do and in his spare time enjoys building things out of LEGOs. He hopes to be an inventor and a published author when he grows up.

Click here to read my review of The Adventures of Tomato and Pea.

And now Erik W becomes the youngest writer ever to face the 7 Questions:

Question Seven: What are your top three favorite books?

Egads! This IS a hard one! Do I really have to choose? If I HAVE to choose…

Redwall by Brian Jacques (and any other works by him)

Jack Blank and the Imagine Nation (also titled The Accidental Hero, when it was re-released) by Matt Myklusch.

The Three Musketeers (unabridged) by Alexandre Dumas

Question Six: How much time do you spend each week writing? Reading?

Sadly, I don’t spend that much time writing my book. I have been working on some short stories and 
picture book drafts (I participate in Julie Hedlund’s 12x12 challenge.  But, besides that, I write in school, 
at home, on my blog, in gym class (don’t ask :) ), etc. I think maybe around 25 hours total.

Now, reading… WOW. Like the before list, my estimated time is spent with all things involving reading, including books, school, at home, my blog, etc. It’s too hard to calculate this.

Question Five: What was the path that led you to publication?

A bunch of rejections. :)

No, really. No agent or publisher took a 6th grade kid seriously. I don’t know how many query letters I’ve 
sent out. I only managed to get one publisher to reply to me (and it was a rejection). But, I didn’t let that discourage me. I really liked the story I told in The Adventures of Tomato and Pea and, as a kid, I was proud that I actually wrote a whole book. I was hoping other people would enjoy the story I wrote, so I self-published.

Question Four: Do you believe writers are born, taught or both? Which was true for you?

I think that both is a good answer. Writers can be born. They have raw talent, but they will write anyway, no matter how good (or bad) it is. Even if you are born with a natural talent to write, learning from others will always make you a better writer. I also believe people who struggle with writing, but have a great story to tell can learn how to be a good writer. For me, I don’t think I have a particular talent for writing. I like to do it and I like to make up stories. That’s why I am trying to become a better writer. 

Question Three: What is your favorite thing about writing? What is your least favorite thing?

My favorite thing is forming the ideas. My mind is always working. I love to make up stories, or even just characters. Sometimes I just play out scenes from random stories I make up in my head. I have ideas for tons of scenes from more than one book that I have never written down.

My least favorite thing is actually sitting down to write. (I actually don’t mind editing – I’m kind of a grammar freak myself- I enjoy finding mistakes (I know, weird…). I don’t know why, but it’s true. I wish there was a USB connector that could just download my ideas into a Word doc. Sitting down to write and not getting distracted is VERY hard for me. But once I’m there, I’ll keep on writing.

Question Two: What one bit of wisdom would you impart to an aspiring writer? (feel free to include as many other bits of wisdom as you like)

Well I could say “Write what you like” or “Write what is you” or “Go after your dreams with a lightsaber or batarang,” but I believe that they’ve all been said before (I’m not so sure about the lightsaber or batarang one…), so I’d like to say - keep writing. Sure, I’ve written a book, but I am a reader first. There are tons of kids out there just like me who want to read stories – your stories. You keep writing, I’ll keep reading.  


Buy the orange properties in Monopoly.

Question One: If you could have lunch with any writer, living or dead, who would it be? Why?

Really, just one? 

How about I host a banquet?


Hmm. You see there are so many authors I admire, I’d have a hard time choosing. All the names are swirling in my head right now. Look there’s Brian Jacques and Matt Myklusch WOOSH Alexandre Dumas, Tom Angleberger, Jude Waston SWISH Jules Verne, Robert Louis Stevenson, Abraham Lincoln, George Lucas, Edgar Allen Poe, Brandon Mull, Patrick Carman. - AAH! I’m getting dizzy!- JK Rowling, Michael Buckley, Lois Lowry. Look out here comes James Patterson!


I have it. I am having lunch with him/her!

Julia Child - Booyah!

Thanks for having me Mr. Kent!


  1. Love this interview with Erik, and yes someone else who likes Redwall/Brian Jacques!

    1. Thank you! YES! Redwall is AWESOME - Have you read The Castaways of the Flying Dutchman? - it's another series by Jacques and also very good! :)

    2. Thanks for the recommendation, have to check it out.

  2. Good advice on writing ability Erik, if people say some of the stuff I've written in the past they'll say that writers are definitely not born, haha. It's just got to do with thinking in the right way and commitment. Too bad I haven't read any of the books you listed as your favorite, although The Three Musketeers is now on my list. I watched the cartoon version of Redwall and I still remember getting kind of frightened by it; but I guess I shouldn't judge the books for that :)

    Nice interview, Robert, the 7 questions series is a great idea.

    And you're definitely right about the orange; in one Monopoly game I traded the red for the orange and proceeded to crush my unsuspecting opponent! :)

    -Daniel Johnston,

    1. Hi Daniel! I didn't even know there was a cartoon of Redwall! Jacques writing and descriptions are amazing. He used to work at a school for the blind. He wrote his stories so the students at the school could "see" his world. I think that's why the writing is so good... and there are some pretty scary rodent bad guys too. ;)

  3. Erik, what a fun and awesome interview! You are an inspiration to kids and grown ups. Keep writing - and reading :)


Thanks for stopping by, Esteemed Reader! And thanks for taking the time to comment. You are awesome.